• Clintons Flip Out And Kill People

    I have to say the thing that leaps out at me most about this report is that Geena Davis is, in fact, still acting. It's like finding out Coolio is releasing a new album. Drudge (and the Drudgekateers ) are declaring that this is "attempting to get us ready for Hilary in '08", although as is usual, the power of Hollywood's social conditioning is vastly overrated. After all, West Wing got the Democratic got the Democratic got Peggy Noonan a paycheck. Dammit. You do, however, have to love the unironic link to the Newsmax summary of the Joe Klein article in which Klein points out that it might be a bad idea for Hillary to run because publications like Newsmax will go batshit crazy. What power has she, this Clinton ? I believe it to be...REAL ULTIMATE POWER. And godless Hollywood lesbianism, which is much the same thing. - Jesse Taylor (X-posted from Pandagon.)
  • Site Stuff

    Quick question: is the site working better for folks? I've been hearing from people that it's been fixing itself this weekend. My girlfriend can finally get it looking right on Safari. Have the magical internet elves done their html rain dance and made things round here pretty again? It'd be a helluva birthday present... (and yes, I know the banner isn't showing on the archives page, I need to fix that).
  • 21!

    Happy birthday to me! Bars beware. By the way -- any candidate proposing legislation outlawing two or more consecutive finals on one's birthday has my vote. This Monday,Tuesday, Wednesday schedule is just absurd. Ezra
  • The Dyslexic War on Terror

    As you all probably know by now, our new catch, al-Qaeda's #3 , may simply have had a similar name to their #3. We wanted Anas al-Liby, we caught Abu Faraj al-Libbi. But hey, this is the story of the War on Terror. We wanted to invade a rogue state with an advanced nuclear weapons program and a history of aiding terrorism, but instead, we hit its orthographical (and geographical) neighbor, Iraq. So Anas al-Liby, Iran -- you two sleep easy tonight. America was close enough. Update : From the article: No European or American intelligence expert contacted last week had heard of al-Libbi until a Pakistani intelligence report last year claimed he had taken over as head of operations after Khalid Shaikh Mohammad’s arrest. A former close associate of Bin Laden now living in London laughed: “What I remember of him is he used to make the coffee and do the photocopying.” Not to betray some sort of ignorance about terrorist operations or anything, but is there really a lot of photocopying and...
  • Sections of History That I Can't Take Seriously

    The Mugwumps: One need not reject out of hand these traditional accounts of the Mugwumps to take issue with some of their specific conclusions. For example, in Building a New American State , Stephen Skowronek offers a more complicated twist on these nineteenth-century reforms, and in doing so, has produced a more nuanced account of Mugwump regulatory thought. Skowronkek distinguishes between "political Mugwumps" and "economic Mugwumps." Like the Mugwumps depicted in Sproat and Fine, political Mugwumps" tended to cling dogmatically to laissez-faire doctrines." But economic Mugwumps, Skowronek observes, "would use the state in a positive way to compensate for the market's most manifest deficiencies." The juxtaposition of serious historical analysis of regulatory thought and the word Mugwump, which sounds like a spin-off from Fraggle Rock, is just impossible to read without sniggers. Which may explain why my coffee-shop neighbors think I'm weird. -Ezra
  • Vaccinate This

    Rich Tucker writes about the link between vaccines and autism in children, and subsequently recommends that we slow down the rate of vaccination for young children. Not being that well versed in the vaccine/autism link, I thought I might have misremembered, but I didn't - the area of conflict is over the use of thimerosal , a mercury-based vaccine preservative. It has little to do with how rapidly the vaccines are administered, but instead whether or not they include a dangerous preservative. If cars get in crashes (to borrow his analogy), you don't ban cars - you make driving safer. Vaccines (presumably) existed without mercury preservatives, and (presumably) can exist without them again - just as the potential to crash your car doesn't require you to ram it into something. - Jesse Taylor
  • The Indefatigable Defatigability Of...Dammit!

    That's what you get when you try to be clever and your body can't decide if it's lunchtime or breakfastime. Adam Cohen writes a piece on bloggers' ethics today, and I'm a bit torn about it. It's a lot hard to differentiate blog-to-blog than it is "regular" media source to "regular" media source. Take, for instance, the Dayton Daily News versus the L.A. Times. The L.A. Times is a quasi-national newspaper; not truly national, but with influence outsize to its distribution. The DDN is a local newspaper that reaches into a geographical area dominated by small suburbs and rural communities, surrounded by newspapers with larger distribution areas (Cincinnati and Columbus). No matter how good the paper is, its best work will simply be picked up and spread around the chain - but the DDN will not become a national paper. Blogs, on the other hand, are accessible universally to anyone with the technology. Boobahmafoo Blog can be gotten to with only the additional effort of typing in the extra...
  • Pandagon Reunion: Class of '05

    As you've probably noticed, Jesse Taylor, of Pandagon fame and Springer for Ohio fortune, posted this morning. He's in town for my 21st -- yes, I'm that young -- which should put the lie to lingering suspicions of our furious fallout. Which isn't to say he didn't, in fact, steal the money, just that I have no proof. In any case, we have to keep up appearances, so he'll be posting here during his stay. Expect more funny. Speaking of the big 21st, I've a midterm on Monday (my birthday), Tuesday (my hangover), and Wednesday, so his contributions are much appreciated, and should keep the site humming along nicely where it'd otherwise crash into my workload, littering my dorm room with mangled neurons and empty Starbucks cups. Also, on Tuesday, we're going to hold court hang out at a Westwood bar for the evening and have a little blogger/reader get together. If you'd like to drop by, shoot me an e-mail. Otherwise, you'll probably hear more about it as it gets closer.
  • CAP's Energy Plan

    I'm a bit less impressed than Brad with CAP's energy plan , but I think that's because it's not, in fact, an energy plan, but a set of responses to soaring oil prices. For some reason, I didn't read the title ("A Progressive Response to High Oil and Gasoline Prices") and was sur[rised at how unambitious it was. Moral of the story? Read titles. Anyway, I'm rambling, here's the plan: • Scrap and Replace: Less affluent drivers tend to stick with old, inefficient cars for much longer than we'd hope simply because they can't afford the replacement costs. If we could motivate them to switch to newer vehicles, the fuel savings would be tremendous. The CAP plan offers two options. In one, the government purchases an extremely large number of fuel-efficient cars and leases them at enormously favorable terms to qualifying individuals. Added bonus: CAP doesn't mention this, but it could act as an excellent bail-out for the struggling American auto industry, particularly if the government forced...
  • History: For Chumps, By Chumps, Of Chumps

    Well, hell-freakin'-o, Kleinians. After an amicable split between Ezra and myself over at Pandagon, I've seen his success over here, and decided that I miss him too much. As such, I'm kicking him off this site and taking over...again. Soon, I will invite a feminist blogger on, institute a Sad Panda policy, and the cycle shall begin anew. In an otherwise unremarkable "liberals hate public prayer" piece, Mark Alexander manages to discombobulate and disorient history in a despicable and disgusting way...dude. He reminded us that in our nation's supreme founding document, the Declaration of Independence, "...our Founders ... declared it a self-evident truth that our right to liberty comes from God." Let's play Spot The Inaccuracy. First prize is a digital 4-by-6 image of something in Los Angeles. (Hey, we work with what we got.) Can the Declaration of Independence be our "nation's supreme founding document"? Particularly since the nation wasn't founded until 11 years after it was written...